Explosive Texts Reveal Sixers, Ben Simmons Rift: ‘He’s Constantly Babied’

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Getty Philadelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons prior to Game Six of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Atlanta Hawks.

Until Ben Simmons is either traded this summer, or the 2016 first overall pick suits up for the Philadelphia 76ers 2021-2022 season-opener, the rumor mill is likely to be constantly in motion.

It’s only been two days since the Sixers’ Game Seven Eastern Conference Semifinals loss to the Atlanta Hawks and while head coach Doc Rivers has certainly taken his share of blame, Simmons has far and away been the most-discussed part of the organization. From enraged Philly fans on Twitter to a bashing from the local media and plenty of analysis from the national sports pundits, it’s hard to scroll through any NBA news this week without seeing Simmons’ name pop up.

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During Tuesday morning’s edition of First Take on ESPN, Stephen A. Smith informed fellow panel member Kendrick Perkins and host Max Kellerman of some shocking developments on the situation between the Sixers and Ben Simmons.


‘He Doesn’t Work. He Doesn’t Listen. … He’s Constantly Babied.’

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GettyPhiladelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons during Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Atlanta Hawks.

Smith preceded his Simmons announcement to Perkins and Kellerman by saying “I just received a text from somebody very, very close to the situation in Philadelphia about Ben Simmons. This is a quote, this is not me. This is them.”

Smith then dropped this doozy.

He doesn’t work, he doesn’t listen, and everyone around him is family, and he’s constantly babied.

After hearing the words from Smith, Kellerman argued that a good trade destination for Simmons would be the defending-NBA-champion Los Angeles Lakers.

“This is why I said, Perk, the Lakers would be the place for him. I think Magic (Johnson) is right,” Kellerman said. “It needs to come from a veteran player, that kind of mentorship. Someone like LeBron James could do it.”

Both Perkins and Smith weren’t having what Kellerman said though, with Perk arguing that Simmons had that kind of player for mentorship in three-time NBA-champion Danny Green on the Sixers, as well as veteran Dwight Howard. Both Green and Howard were teammates of LeBron’s last season when the Lakers defeated the Miami Heat in the 2020 NBA Finals inside the NBA Bubble.


Smith on Simmons: ‘[Philadelphia] Has Gotta Go in Another Direction’

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GettyPhiladelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons and Atlanta Hawks point guard Trae Young during Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

At another point during the Simmons segment on First Take, Smith showcased his famous high-energy persona during a debate on whether the point guard’s noted shooting issues could be fixed.

“Four years Ben Simmons has been in the NBA. (His) game is the same,” Smith said. “He can go downhill, he can rebound, he’s an elite defender, but offensively, he does nothing different. He never developed his game.”

The bottom line, according to the analyst, is that the Sixers need to move on from the three-time All-Star.

“Ben Simmons looks the same as he has always looked, which means that he never worked on his game, and if you didn’t work on your game, why should I trust you, if I’m Philly?” Smith asked. “You had four years. I gave you $30-plus million per (year) and you still didn’t work on your game. I’m sorry, you’ve gotta go in another direction.”

READ NEXT: Former Atlanta Hawks Star Bashes Sixers’ Doc Rivers in NSFW Rant


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